Health workers' demands, strike envy-driven - NMA

Health workers' demands, strike envy-driven - NMA

Among their demands are the upward adjustment of Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS), arrears of skipping of CONHESS 10, employment of additional health professionals, implementation of court judgements and upward review of retirement age from 60-65.

Unions of workers in federal government owned public hospitals across Nigeria under the aegis of Joint Health Sector Union, JOHESU, say they will not call off the strike they are now embarking on until the government meets their demands.

He said, "Consequent upon this, therefore, JOHESU has no other choice than to proceed on an indefinite nationwide strike as from the midnight of Tuesday 17th April, 2018, which is the spiraling of the notice of strike".

Biobelemoye said the implementation of the agreement was supposed to begin five weeks after it was signed "as was done for medical doctors".

"If this group of health workers persists on continuing this strike, government will be forced to invoke the provisions of the relevant labour laws, especially Section 43 of the Trade Dispute Act", the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment said in a statement Wednesday by its Director of Press, Samuel Olowookere.

On the claim by the government that it has met all the demands of the unions, the JOHESU leader said the promotional arrears the government was talking about is not among the major demands of the union on which it struck a deal with the government.

He further stated that the union had earlier given the federal government a 21-day ultimatum which yielded no result after the agreement of the FG was not implemented.

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He, however, noted that six months after the suspension of the nationwide strike, government was yet to do anything tangible over the pending issues.

"They only invited us on the 5th of April told us that our issues are being looked into as usual without any concrete effort on how they are planning to meet our demand".

Biobelemoye urged members at the states and local government health institutions on continuous sensitisation and mobilisation for possible solidarity strike, if government failed to attend to their demands.

Obisesan Oluwatuyi, General Secretary of the Nigerian Union of Allied Health Professionals (NAHP), told reporters in Abuja, the country's capital, that they would not call off the strike until government meets their demands.

JOHESU membership includes the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), Medical and Health Workers Union (MHWUN), and Senior Staff Association of University Teaching Hospitals.

Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) yesterday described the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) as "an illegal body" that should not be accorded any recognition by Nigerians.

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